Price Trickery or Why You Should Not Assume Smaller Sizes are More Expensive

Last week I went to a local grocery store I had been wanting to go to forever. It's a great place, much like the neighborhood groceries of my childhood. The front of the store was loaded with plants and flowers and the inside had gorgeous, fresh produce (not all that expensive, either) and what I was looking for...bulk products. I was also looking for coconut oil, having run out a day or so before, and not wanting to order through Amazon and pay outrageous shipping prices. I found the coconut oil - Nutiva, my favorite brand -- in several sizes. I picked up the 29 oz. size and saw that it was $23 and some pennies. I didn't really want to spend that much, so I picked up the 15 oz. size and saw that it was $8.55. "Now wait a minute," my brain said. "2 x 15 = 30 and 2 x $8.55 = $17.10, which is over $6 less than the 29 oz. size."

See, you would assume that the prices would be at least a little closer, and that the two 15 oz. sizes would be slightly more expensive than the 29 oz. size. I'll be a lot of people get screwed out of that $6+ because they don't bother to look.

Unfortunately, I've found this to be true of a lot of grocery store items. Start checking, I'm sure you will too. A simple way to figure this out is to look at the price per oz. on the shelf tag. A customer of mine taught me that trick, and it does work. Something may look like a better buy, but when you look at the price per oz., it really isn't. This works really well with sale items. It may look like that store brand is a better buy, but when you look, it is actually smaller and costs more per oz. This is just some retail trickery the stores use to get you to buy their brand, on which they make a greater profit. It can also work in the opposite way. For example, I was looking at a BOGO item the other day, and when I divided the price per oz. by two and compared it to the generic brand, the generic was cheaper per oz. than even half of the name brand. BOGOS aren't always a better buy. You have to be careful.

Do you have to ask what I did? I spent the $17.10 and bought the two 15 oz. jars. PLUS, the jars are great for storing beans and such when the coconut oil is gone. Win-win, right?


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